And yet another axle question?? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-04-2009, 08:09 PM   #1
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Name: Don
Trailer: 1989 Bigfoot 17'
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What is the best way to determine if you need to replace your axle or not, other than the fact that the trailer is over 33 years old? I am looking at installing electric brakes and a complete axle is not a whole lot more money. I have determined that mine is welded in so there will be the additional labour for them to remove and replace. Seems to sit even side for side, possibly a little lower than some I have seen on here.
Thanks...
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Old 01-05-2009, 01:38 AM   #2
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Don,

There are a lot of threads here on axles. Try searching for some of the very good discussions on axles. There are lots of them specific to your trailer.

Generally accepted that one needs 3" of clearance from top of tire to wheel well. I'm not sure of the original specs for the Trillium but there is a range of motion you can measure from no load to bounce load as described on the Dexter axle site. (If you search the threads you can get the original angles and then look up the charts on Dexter.)

I could probably be a lot more help with specifics if you had a boler. There is a trailer place CERKA in Milton you can order the axles from, talk to Joe. He has recommended various places to do the installation for many of us here in Southern Ontario. So far everone seems to have been happy with who ever he has recommended. Self included.

Roy
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Old 01-05-2009, 05:39 AM   #3
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Thanks Roy. That is who I was going to contact tomorrow. So I am presuming they don't install them there? I will talk to Joe. I have purchased other axles, etc from them before for my car trailer.
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Old 01-05-2009, 11:15 PM   #4
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To tell you the truth Don, I don't know if they install or not, I never asked.

I know they assemble the flexrides to order in their own shop. They wanted to make me one rather than a special order from Dexter. Even though I had worked through the specs with one of the engineers from Dexter.

All I know is I finally got my axle as ordered. I really felt like they felt they were doing me a real big favour, because everything seemed to be a such a bother for them. They know their products and have a good selection, lets just say their concept of customer service leaves a lot to be desired. With one exception, the kid working a summer job that helped me load the axle onto my truck.
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Old 01-06-2009, 09:42 PM   #5
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To tell you the truth Don, I don't know if they install or not, I never asked.

I know they assemble the flexrides to order in their own shop. They wanted to make me one rather than a special order from Dexter. Even though I had worked through the specs with one of the engineers from Dexter.

All I know is I finally got my axle as ordered. I really felt like they felt they were doing me a real big favour, because everything seemed to be a such a bother for them. They know their products and have a good selection, lets just say their concept of customer service leaves a lot to be desired. With one exception, the kid working a summer job that helped me load the axle onto my truck.
I was in there today Roy. They do NOT install anything there. Found a guy over in my area that does it so will talk to him this weekend about doing it. Will more than likely lift the shell off to do it (getting more involved than I wanted to). Any reason you didn't use one of their flexride axles? I was thinking of ordering one of them as it will be correct first time with them building it right there: the trailing arms are adjustable; and ready in a couple of days instead of a three week order (I plan on taking this trailer to Florida the middle of next month). Not sure to go with a 2200# with the 7" brake or the 3500# with the 10" brake. About $90. difference in the two.
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Old 01-07-2009, 03:33 AM   #6
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Any reason you didn't use one of their flexride axles?
...
Not sure to go with a 2200# with the 7" brake or the 3500# with the 10" brake.
I'm not sure why you would have to lift the shell off, unless it is being torch welded.

Not taking the flexride was technical for me. I went from a leading arm to trailing while shifting the axle over to center the wheels under the trailer and was altering the final height all at the same time. I put all the numbers into a spreadsheet to make my decisions. Weights angles, tire sizes, ride heights etc. Spreadsheet aside, the Dexter was just a slightly better match to what I wanted to do. It gave me the optimum ride height at the optimum ride for the axle angles. Dexter recommends 10 degrees down, Flexride 24 degrees down. (PM me with your email addy if you want my spreadsheet)

The 3500# has a thicker tube for the axle i.e. stronger but heavier. I think you can get that with shorter pieces of torsion rubber inside which will lower the weight ratings giving you a smoother ride. At least that is how Dexter does it.

Flexride you can weld directly because the torsion parts are changable cartridges(I think). With Dexter you might want to consider the brackets because you have to change the whole axle.

7" vs 10"? I'd go with the 10" if possible, not for stopping ability because you set that with your controller. The 10" is also wider giving you much more pad, which means it should last longer. Parts are [b]supposedly more readily available for the 10" [b]off the shelf if you are travelling. Clearance with the drums may be an issue, can you accomodate the wider drum?

I didn't realize I could get a 10" on the Dexter #9, till well after I had installed. That would have been something I would have considered had I known it was possible.
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Old 01-07-2009, 03:45 AM   #7
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One of the PDF's I have about the Flexride's adjustable angles says:

NOTE: WE STRONGLY RECOMMEND THE NORMAL 24* DOWN STARTING ANGLE EXCEPTING SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCE

That was probably the final factor in making my decision as to which brand to use.
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Old 01-07-2009, 04:41 PM   #8
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My hopeful installer is coming over tonight to look at the trailer after I called him today. He actually doesn't like the Dexter or the flexride and wants to look at installing a normal axle with springs and hangers (possibly a dropped axle if the height is affected too much) with the axle under or over the springs, which ever works... let you know what we decide.
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Old 01-07-2009, 08:47 PM   #9
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Please do,
I'd be wary of someone that wants to install something other than what was and is still originally installed on the trailer. Sort of like saying, I only install twin I beam suspensions because I don't trust MacPherson Struts. We'll just jack that little Neon up a foot to make it work the way I'm used to doing things.

If you want to make a trip to Toronto, I'll give you the name & number of the guy that did mine. Surely there must be someone out there that does axle's.
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Old 01-07-2009, 09:15 PM   #10
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I have a Dexter with electric brakes on my Trillium - works great!

I agree with Roy on this - I would stick with a standard trailer axle system. I have seen quite a few 'modded' axles on Trilliums for sale and they always jack up the trailer by at least a foot. Though it increases clearance and suspension travel it must make the trailer more 'tippy'... and just looks dumb.

That's my two bits.
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Old 01-07-2009, 10:41 PM   #11
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Personally, I think if the axle place doesn't burn down while you're waiting to have the axle installed, ur way ahead of the game.
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Old 01-09-2009, 05:56 AM   #12
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Personally, I think if the axle place doesn't burn down while you're waiting to have the axle installed, ur way ahead of the game.
I was thinking of your post ...... glad to see you overcame those obstacles but I am not finished yet
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Old 01-09-2009, 07:20 AM   #13
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I was thinking of your post ...... glad to see you overcame those obstacles but I am not finished yet
Hi: Don N... I just thought I would mention that Paul Neumeister A-1 Auto in Sebringville Ont. 519-393-6410 does a lot of work on Bolers Trills etc. He can install your axle at his shop.
Alf S. North shore of Lake Erie p.s. he owns one of the verry rare 1650 square Bolers...you should see IT!!!
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Old 01-09-2009, 08:25 AM   #14
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Paul ordered and replaced the axle on my Boler last summer and had another Boler with a welded-in axle there at the same time. Honest, dependable and excellent workmanship.
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